How can Collaborating Virtually Compete with face-to-face Interaction?

How can Collaborating Virtually Compete with face-to-face Interaction?

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The world is not as small as it once was. Individuals are more complex than they once were, seeking greater freedoms of expression in their professional lives. They are more intelligent and have a great need to know their roles in their broader organizations. Corporations have changed also. They are no longer seeking profit in one arena. Many of the successful corporations compete in a myriad of different arena in an even more diverse network of countries. Corporations have become worldwide conglomerates. “Organizations of the future will increasingly live in a world that is flatter, faster, and much more chaotic. They will need to respond in the marketplace before headquarters realizes the game has changed.” (Katzenbach & Khan, 2009, pg. 99) As a result of this flatter, faster, and more chaotic world both individuals and organizations have found it necessary to change the way they communicate. As individuals we are more connected than we have been at any other point in history. “Where once the challenge was how to stay connected, now the pervasive use of BlackBerry and wireless-enabled laptop computers allow one to be connected around the clock and around the world. The new challenge may be learning how to filter out information or how to set boundaries around available time. Effective virtual collaborators will learn to establish team norms that ensure that no one is being overwhelmed with too much information and that are respectful of teammates’ work/life balance.” (Bradley, 2010, pp. 205) Here rests the fulcrum of successfully collaborating virtually. It is balancing the right mix of information with the correct medium in order to ensure collaboration takes place. Successful collaborators keep constituents eng...

... middle of paper ... the time available for discussion and analysis of strategic options (Rudolph & Repenning, 2002), creates problems in achieving both cognitive and effective consensus at least some of the time (Gersick, 1988), and generally diminishes communication quality in many, if not most, instances (Waller et al., 2002). Yet organizational team members seem unable to escape the demand for speed. A significant organizational challenge is in creating communication processes that allow reflective understanding of the meaning and perspectives of others, yet within the increasingly stringent time constraints commonly found in organizational settings.” (Berry, 2006, pp. 344-366) As a leader, when it comes to collaborating virtually this is your primary task. Leaders need to put in place systems that allow the strength of the collective genius of their constituents to shine.

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